Journal of International Oral Health

: 2017  |  Volume : 9  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 130--132

Peripheral ossifying fibroma in premolar - A rare case report

Kalaivani Rajasekaran, Sujatha Subramanian, Jesudoss Kandasamy, Rohini Govindasamy 
 CSI College of Dental Sciences and Research, Madurai, Tamil Nadu, India

Correspondence Address:
Rohini Govindasamy
Villa No C-16 A, Shriyaa Gardens, Masthanpatti, Opposite to Vickram Hospital, Madurai - 625 020


Solitary gingival growths, the most common finding in the oral mucosa, are usually due to reactive response to local irritation, and one such reactive lesion is peripheral ossifying fibroma (POF). This article is emphasized on a case report of POF in a 28-year-old female in the maxillary premolar region. Clinical presentation, radiographic details, histopathologic features, differential diagnosis, and treatment with regular follow-up are made.

How to cite this article:
Rajasekaran K, Subramanian S, Kandasamy J, Govindasamy R. Peripheral ossifying fibroma in premolar - A rare case report.J Int Oral Health 2017;9:130-132

How to cite this URL:
Rajasekaran K, Subramanian S, Kandasamy J, Govindasamy R. Peripheral ossifying fibroma in premolar - A rare case report. J Int Oral Health [serial online] 2017 [cited 2023 Dec 1 ];9:130-132
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In the oral cavity, gingiva is often the site of localized growths that are considered to be reactive rather than neoplastic in nature.[1] There exist many types of localized reactive lesions seen on the gingiva, including focal fibrous hyperplasia, pyogenic granuloma, peripheral giant cell granuloma, and peripheral ossifying fibroma (POF).[2]

Although many of these lesions clinically present with a diagnostic dilemma, they are identified as specific entity only on the basis of typical and consistent histomorphology. POF is one such common reactive hyperplastic inflammatory lesions of the gingiva. The gingival growth is usually seen on interdental papilla, and it constitutes 9% of all gingival growth.[2] It has been reported that POF represents a maturation of a preexisting pyogenic granuloma or a peripheral giant cell granuloma.[3]

POF presents clinically as red to pink, sessile or pedunculated growth with the size usually being <2 cm. Weeks or months may pass by before it is seen and diagnosed. There is a gender difference with 66% of the disease occurring in females.[4]

It appears only on the gingiva, more often on the mandible rather than maxilla and is frequently found in the area around incisors and canines and the adjacent teeth are usually not affected.[5]

Histologically, the POF consists of a fibrocellular component with focal deposits of bone, some cementum as well as irregular amounts of decalcification.[6]

The etiology of POF is unclear. Trauma or local irritants such as calculus, masticatory forces, ill-fitting dentures, and poor-quality restorations are all known to precipitate the development of POF.[7]

Elimination of local etiological factors followed by surgical excision is the preferred treatment modality.[8]

 Case Report

A 28-year-old female patient reported with the chief complaint of growth on the gingiva in her upper left second premolar region for the past 6 months and is painless.[2] The patient's past dental and medical histories were noncontributory. On intraoral examination, a growth of 2 cm × 2 cm was present in the attached gingiva buccally in relation to 24, 25 [Figure 1]. The growth extended palatally through the interdental papilla [Figure 2]. It was erythematous in appearance; firm in consistency with mild tenderness on palpation and bleeding on provocation was seen. Provisional diagnosis of pyogenic granuloma was made.{Figure 1}{Figure 2}

Intraoral periapical radiograph was obtained. Radiographic examination revealed normal bone architecture with no findings pertaining to the lesion. The differential diagnosis included peripheral giant cell granuloma and peripheral odontogenic fibroma. After routine blood examinations, excisional biopsy of the growth was done; mucoperiosteal flap was raised, thorough debridement and degranulation in relation to 24, 25 were done to prevent recurrence [Figure 3].{Figure 3}

Histopathological examination revealed evidence of nonkeratinized stratified squamous epithelium and underlying fibrocellular connective tissue with basophilic calcification and bone fibroma with ossification [Figure 4].{Figure 4}

The follow-up of the case for 1 year showed normal healing of the area with no recurrence confirming the lesion as POF [Figure 5].{Figure 5}


Gingival overgrowths are one of the common lesions encountered in day-to-day practice. POF is one such gingival growth. There are two types of ossifying fibroma: central and peripheral. The central type arises from the endosteum and periodontal ligament (PDL) around the root apex and subsequently causes expansion of the medullary cavity while the peripheral type originates from the periodontal soft tissue around the interdental papilla.[1]

POF was coined by Eversole and Rovin.[6] It occurs exclusively on the gingiva; appears as a nodular mass, it may either be pedunculated or sessile. POF usually emanates from the interdental papilla, is often mistaken for pyogenic granuloma.[1] There exists a considerable confusion over the nomenclature and diagnosis of the lesion, and there are several terms to describe due to its varied histopathologic features.[4] Compared to the lesions considered under the differential diagnosis of POF, they are firmer and less friable with a typical longer course.[10]

Majority of reports suggest that POF is commonly seen during the second decade of life and reduction in size as age progresses. In the present case, POF is seen during the second decade as reported in other cases.[4] Approximately, 60% of POFs occur in females with predilection for the mandible, and incisor-cuspid region constitutes about 50%.[2],[4] However, in our case, the lesion was seen in the posterior maxilla which is rare.

POF clinically and histopathologically resembles pyogenic granuloma, considering the development of POFs secondary to fibrosis of granulation tissue.[11] In the present case, the etiopathogenic mechanism underlying POFs is due to inflammatory hyperplasia of cells of periosteum and PDL. Chronic irritation of periosteal and periodontal membrane is causing metaplasia of connective tissue resulting in the bone or dystrophic calcification.[12],[13] Some cases of POFs are associated with known genetic mutations such as nevoid basal cell carcinoma syndrome, multiple endocrine hyperplasia Type II, and neurofibromatosis and Gardner Syndrome.[14] Hormones seem to play a role in the progress of the lesions accounting for the female predilection.[4]

The exclusive occurrence of POF in gingiva is due to the proximity of gingiva to the PDL and presence of oxytalan fibers within the mineralized matrix of the lesion.[15],[16] POFs occur in children with mixed or primary dentition and little specific occurrence in primary teeth.[17],[18]

Radiographic features of POF may vary. Radiopaque foci of calcifications have been reported to be scattered in the central area of the lesion, but not all lesions demonstrate radiographic calcifications. Underlying bone involvement is usually not visible on a radiograph. In rare instances, superficial erosion of bone is noted.[6] In the present case, no radiographic findings were found which indicated that this could be early stages of the lesion.

Pyogenic granuloma appears as soft, friable nodule, small size, and bleeding tendency may or may not show calcifications. Displacement of the tooth and resorption of the alveolar bone are also not observed. Peripheral giant cell granuloma shares same clinical features but POF lacks the purple or blue discoloration commonly associated with peripheral giant cell granuloma, and radiographically, it appears similar as flecks of calcification is seen.[2] Treatment includes surgical excision followed with oral prophylaxis. Follow-up is essential because of its high recurrence rates. Recurrence rates vary between 8% and 20%.[19],[2] Recurrence may be due to incomplete excision or persistence of local factors. Early recognition and definitive surgical intervention result in reduction in recurrence rates and risk of tooth loss and bone loss.[20]


Clinical diagnosis of gingival lesions and distinguishing each lesion from other lesions in the same spectrum is a challenge uninhibited. Hence, a meticulous and thorough correlation between clinical and histopathological presentation marks the path in making an accurate diagnosis of POF.

Although anterior mandible is the common site, presence in the posterior maxilla makes this case a rare entity. Histopathologic confirmation is mandatory. Complete surgical excision down to the periosteum is the preferred treatment. As the recurrence rate is high, close postoperative, follow-up is required.[1]

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Conflicts of interest

There are no conflicts of interest.


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